We are excited to announce that auditions for National Youth Choir (18-25 Years) will be getting underway soon. Online auditions will be taking place from 10 June, and you will be able to sign up for an audition from 13 May until 5 June. We are still adding the finishing touches to our 2024/25 programme, but we're delighted to share that it will include an international tour to South Africa in the spring alongside regular activities like our autumn Discovery Weekend, Carols at the Royal Albert Hall and a summer residential.

Who is this choir for?

  • We are looking for enthusiastic singers who are passionate about choral singing 
  • As an organisation we champion inclusion and diversity, and encourage applications from singers of all backgrounds
  • Singers must be aged 18-24 inclusive on 31 August 2024
  • Singers must be a British citizen or a resident of the UK at the time of application

What will I get out of taking part?

As a member of National Youth Choir (18-25 Years), you'll get access to a once-in-a-lifetime international tour, world-class musical experiences, professional-level recording opportunities and a chance to make life-long friends. Here's what our singers have to say about being part of the choir:

  • “For me, National Youth Choir genuinely feels like being part of a family."
  • "It's done so much for me. I've learnt so much about myself and other people."
  • "National Youth Choirs allowed me to realise that mistakes are okay. Being surrounded by people who support you makes you not just a better singer but a better person."
  • "If you're not sure whether to apply or not, I wasn't either and I'm so glad I did. I don't have a music education background but I auditioned anyway and I don't regret it." 

Listen to our most recent recordings to hear the choir in action - Listen now

We will be running an online Discovery Event at 4pm on Thursday 23 May when you can ask us your burning questions about the audition process and hear what it's like to be a member of the choir. 

Register for our online Discovery Event

What does being in the choir involve?

The choir meets for four standalone projects each year which normally fall on weekends or during university holidays. Here's an overview of the schedule for the 2024/25 season:

Project 1: Residential Discovery Weekend in Birmingham - dates TBC (likely 6-8 September OR 13-15 September 2024)

  • This will be a chance for the 2024/25 cohort of singers to meet up for the first time, get to know each other and start preparing music for the year ahead together

Project 2: Carols at the Royal Albert Hall - several performances between 14 -23 December 2024 with two days of rehearsal in the week preceding 

  • Every year, the choir performs in the famous 'Carols at the Royal Albert Hall' alongside the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. At every concert, a soprano or alto from the National Youth Choir (18-25 Years) performs the opening solo verse to Once in Royal David’s City.

Project 3: International Tour to South Africa - 5-18 April 2025

  • Here's a message from Principal Conductor of the choir, Nic Chalmers, about this exciting opportunity: 

We are excited that as part of the 2025 Annual Programme, singers in National Youth Choir (18-25 Years) will have the opportunity to take part in an international tour. Our jam-packed trip to South Africa will feature partnerships with Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra & Cape Town Opera, a workshop project in Cape Flat schools, and several performances in Cape Town and the surrounding Stellenbosch region. We have formed partnerships with these fantastic organisations in and around Cape Town to support a legacy for the work we do the trip. On our return to the UK, we’ll be performing a tour finale concert at St John's Smith Square in London. We are so excited to be touring again, and look forward to creating memories that will last a lifetime.

Project 4: Summer Residential - dates and location TBC

  • This is a week-long residential course consisting of rehearsals in preparation for professional recording sessions and a performance at the end of the course.
  • Our residential courses feature plenty of social activities like quizzes, dancercise, choir 'taskmaster', film nights, yoga, football and more
  • Singers will also get opportunities to pursue their own personal musical development through activities like one-on-one singing lessons, Alexander Technique sessions, masterclasses, vocal health seminars and career advice forums

Additionally, National Youth Choir (18-25 Years) are often invited to perform as part of summer music festivals like the BBC Proms. Any additional performances scheduled for summer 2025 are likely to be confirmed in spring 2025.

What commitment is needed to be a member of the choir?

  • Members of National Youth Choir (18-25 Years) are expected to commit to all four projects - any N/As (not available) will be considered on a case-by-case basis considering exceptional circumstances only
  • Choir members must re-audition at the end of each academic year to participate in the next year’s events

Will it cost me anything?

  • All National Youth Choir (18-25 Years) activities are subsidised by the fundraising we do as a charity, but we still need some additional financial input from singers in order to deliver our annual programme of events
  • Financial Assistance is available to all members and is offered on a sliding scale based on eligibility. Financial Assistance can cover up to 100% of participation costs as well as provide additional support with things like travel expenses 

Find out more about Financial Assistance

  • Our 2024/25 programme of events will cost £4,000 - £4,500* (*maximum cost) and will be payable in 4 installments across the year. There is a £20 audition fee and a £90 membership fee for those joining the National Youth Choir for the first time.
  • We are aware that this is a significant increase from previous annual programme fees, primarily due to an exciting tour to South Africa. The annual programme cost is directly linked to the number of members and finalising the associated costs of the international tour.

How do I join the choir?

  • To join the choir, you will need to do a short, informal online audition with members of our music team
  • To find out exactly what to expect from this experience, please visit our page: How to Prepare
  • Please let us know about any access needs in advance of your audition and we will do our best to accommodate them

Book your audition


Any questions?

If you have any questions about joining National Youth Choir (18-25 Years) please feel free to get in touch with Rebecca by calling 0191 820 0276 or emailing [email protected]

We will also be running a free online Discovery Event at 4pm on Thursday 23 May when you can ask us your burning questions about the audition process and hear what it's like to be a member of the choir.